Vidhu Vinod Chopra Marriage: Love Is A Filmmaker & Film Critic Wedding

Vidhu Vinod Chopra has always been an outlier among the A-grade producers of Bollywood, and one look at his films should remove all doubt of that suggestion. In an era when film-makers were churning out tender potboilers, he turned out the grim Parinda (1989). When he was approached for the remake of Hollywood film Patch Adams by a less-known editor, Chopra gave it a shot, and the world got Munna Bhai MBBS (2003). Chopra has always been at forefront of experimentation, something that always set him apart in his league.

In his personal life, his first tryst with marriage was way back in 1971 when he tied the knot with his Film and Television Institute alumnus Renu Saluja. Chopra would later marry again, twice, and we’re going to unravel the full story right now.

Vidhu Vinod Chopra – Making Films That Matter


Vidhu Vinod Chopra was born on 5th September 1952 in Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India. His half-brother is the noted film-maker Ramanand Sagar. Chopra had most of his early education in Srinagar, and growing up he developed a keen interest in cinema and the performing arts. He later joined the direction course of the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII), Pune.

Chopra’s family was extremely supportive of this decision, and he later shared that his brother would pay the Rs.250 fee of his institute from his Rs.1100 salary! Since his graduation in 1976, Chopra has worked as a producer, director and editor in 18 films, most of which have been commercially successful, and many critically acclaimed.

Did You Know?
Vidhu Vinod Chopra remade his 1989 film Parinda in Hollywood with the name Broken Horses in the year 2015.

The Really Early Marriage


Vidhu Vinod Chopra got married for the first time in the year 1971 to his FTII friend Renu Saluja, who was pursuing the editing course. The duo were still in the institute when they took the decision to tie the knot, and Chopra and Saluja were just 19-years old. “…Now when I look back, I realise that I must have been crazy getting married at just 19…”, said Chopra in an interview in 2015. The couple collaborated professionally for the first time with Chopra’s diploma film Murder at Monkey Hill that was released in 1976. Saluja worked as an editor, and was also credited as the associate director for the film, which turned out to be a surprise success and won the National Film Award for the Best Experimental Film in 1977.

The couple had a strong bond but Saluja had a condition- she did not want any children. That his wife was happy with a childless wedlock did not sit right with Chopra, who wanted children of his own. The matter soon became a bone of contention between the pair. Chopra tried his level best to change his wife’s mind but his efforts seemed to go in vain. Needless to say the difference in opinion soon became a wide rift between the married couple, and in 1983 the duo amicably divorced. Saluja still worked with Chopra, and has been the editor for most of his films. They remained close friends even after the split and maintained cordial relationship till Renu Saluja’s untimely death due to cancer in the year 2000.

An Obscure Second Marriage


Chopra then moved on to marry the short-film maker Shabnam Sukhdev somewhere in mid-1980s. Shabnam Sukhdev is the daughter of the noted short-film maker S.Sukhdev. Little is known about this matrimonial chapter of Chopra’s life. It is quite likely that they got along due to their shared interest in films and eventually had a private marriage, but most facts remain fuzzy. Chopra and Sukhdev also split by 1989, since Chopra had finally met someone who would go on to be his true life partner for life.

The Search For Soulmate Ends


In 1989, Chopra was approached by a journalist named Anupama Chandra, who wanted to feature him in an article titled ‘Directors of Tomorrow’. While Chopra, was ready to oblige her an interview, he was appalled by the fact that Anupama knew little about his past work. This irked the filmmaker and he bluntly asked her to come back after doing some homework. The young journalist found the director’s behaviour too haughty and decided to never meet him again. But that same year Chopra’s Parinda came out, and it left every movie critic and journalist including Anupama Chandra awestruck. Anupama’s mother Kamna Chandra is story and script writer, and Anupama immediately recommended her to work with Chopra, and that marked the beginning of Chopra and Anupama’s formal acquaintanceship.

Chopra signed Kamna Chandra for his film 1942: A Love Story in the year 1994, and this is when Chopra and Anupama met for the first time in a cordial manner. It is during the making of the film that Chopra got to know Anupama better and the more he knew her the more he got smitten by love. By 1997, the couple was in a serious relationship, and Chopra was so head over heels in love with Anupama that he even made a film Kareeb (1998) in dedication of his love. The pair got married somewhere around late 1990s, and have been in a rock-solid marriage since then.

Life Thereafter


Chopra and Anupama’s marriage is that of two opposites in literal terms. One is a film-maker while other is a film critic. But despite that fact they have always shared a common ground when it comes to love and respect towards one another. Chopra once shared that Anupama is that person who has brought the best out of him, and transformed him for good. The couple continues to have the same zeal in their relationship, which they had 20 years ago. We hope it always remains the same and wish Vidhu Vinod Chopra and Anupama Chopra the very best in their future endeavours.

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